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Gopal, A and Jana, S and Murthy, A (2017) Contrasting speed-accuracy tradeoffs for eye and hand movements reveal the optimal nature of saccade kinematics. J Neurophysiol, 118 (3). pp. 1664-1676.

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Abstract

In contrast to hand movements, the existence of a neural representation of saccade kinematics is unclear. Saccade kinematics is typically thought to be specified by motor error/desired displacement and generated by brain stem circuits that are not penetrable to voluntary control. We studied the influence of instructed hand movement velocity on the kinematics of saccades executed without explicit instructions. When the hand movement was slow the saccade velocity decreased, independent of saccade amplitude. We leveraged this modulation of saccade velocity to study the optimality of saccades (in terms of velocity and endpoint accuracy) in relation to the well-known speed-accuracy tradeoff that governs voluntary movements (Fitts’ law). In contrast to hand movements that obeyed Fitts' law, normometric saccades exhibited the greatest endpoint accuracy and lower reaction times, relative to saccades accompanying slow and fast hand movements. In the slow condition, where saccade endpoint accuracy suffered, we observed that targets were more likely to be foveated by two saccades resulting in step-saccades. Interestingly, the endpoint accuracy was higher in two-saccade trials, compared with one-saccade trials in both the slow and fast conditions. This indicates that step-saccades are a part of the kinematic plan for optimal control of endpoint accuracy. Taken together, these findings suggest normometric saccades are already optimized to maximize endpoint accuracy and the modulation of saccade velocity by hand velocity is likely to reflect the sharing of kinematic plans between the two effectors.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: Neurodegenerative Disorders
Neuro-Oncological Disorders
Neurocognitive Processes
Neuronal Development and Regeneration
Informatics and Imaging
Genetics and Molecular Biology
Depositing User: Dr. D.D. Lal
Date Deposited: 12 Sep 2018 05:24
Last Modified: 12 Sep 2018 05:24
URI: http://nbrc.sciencecentral.in/id/eprint/445

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